The promise by this administration to bring on stream the nation’s moribund refineries seems to be coming on gradually. With the announcement that the Kaduna Refinery has started production is a beckon of hope that the other two – Warri and Port Harcourt – will follow soon.
For this, that Kaduna Refining and Petrochemical Limited, which came on stream on Saturday after months of closure for repairs, has commenced actual production of petroleum products on Wednesday after days of technical test run, is a sweet balm to Nigerians.
The re-streaming of the 110,000 barrels per day (bpd) capacity plant and resumption of fuel production is a major boost to the effort by the Federal Government to augment the supply of petroleum products towards resolving the fuel scarcity problem in major cities in the country.
The Nigerian National Petroleum Corporation, NNPC, said the refinery, which commenced fuel production on Saturday with an initial yield of about 1.5 million litres of premium motor spirit, PMS, popularly called petrol, has since increased its daily production capacity to 3.2 million litres.
“The injection of this volume into the system will significantly impact ongoing special intervention efforts by the NNPC management designed to bring relief to motorists across the country,” the NNPC said in a statement on Wednesday by its spokesperson, Ohi Alegbe.
The Managing Director, Pipelines and Products Marketing Company, PPMC, Esther Nanmdi-Ogbue, had said last Friday in Abuja that Kaduna was one of the refineries billed for re-streaming before the end of the year in line with the directive by the Minister of State for Petroleum Resources, Emmanuel Kachikwu.
Before the closure in September, Kaduna refinery had not worked for most part of the year, except briefly in July and August, when its utilization capacity dropped to about 2.6 per cent and 10.5 per cent respectively, according to the NNPC monthly operational report for October.
The other refinery expected to restart production in the next one week is the 210,000 bpd capacity Port Harcourt refinery shut down since October for repairs.
The 125,000 bpd capacity Warri refinery, which was closed down since September equally for repairs, would be the last to come back on stream, according to the resumption timeline expected to see all the refineries come back on before the end of the year.